Investor strategy survey. This week in insurance tech.
Great post by Alex Rampell of Andreessen Horowitz earlier this month on B2B2C business models. As Rampell writes:
“Done right, B2B2C can be one of the most effective ways of acquiring customers and constructing a powerful moat. Anyone can acquire customers on Google or Facebook, but B2B2C channels are generally proprietary, and often yield network effects that prevent your economics from deteriorating.”
On Twitter, Rampell adds that B2B2C models can be particularly powerful when applied well in fintech:
GreenSky, which went public earlier this week, is a good example. The Atlanta-based digital lending company partners with banks, which pay GreenSky a percentage of loans generated, and, on the other hand, works with home remodeling contractors, who actively market GreenSky’s solution to homeowners.
Notably, GreenSky has maintained strong EBITDA margins of close to 50% since the start of 2016, meaning that the company has good cost control, with only about half of its revenues going to top-line expenses. We wrote about GreenSky’s platform approach here.
But there are still a lot of unanswered questions about B2B2C startup models in insurance, especially in the US. Some to consider:
While carriers in Asia are pursuing B2B2C models to different degrees of success, can such an approach succeed in the US regulatory context?
Travel insurance has largely moved to an affinity partnership model, with lots of one-off integrations and annual revenue from partnerships between airlines and travel insurance provider estimated to represent up to $1.5B in premiums. But when it comes to insurance startups looking to scale a B2B2C model, can they find big enough opportunities for digital integrations in which “Business A wants a different brand involved”?
As relationships end either by a company’s own accord or due to external circumstances, how risky is overexposure to certain partners in B2B2C models?
What do you think? Reply back with your thoughts on B2B2C models in insurance.
Willis Towers Watson released its latest insurance tech briefing. The briefing, in partnership with CB Insights, includes the latest list of insurance startup investments, strategic investments by (re)insurers, and partnerships through Q1 2017.
Palo-Alto-based startup Next Insurance this week said it would aim to reposition itself to to become a licensed insurance carrier. Per CEO Guy Goldstein, the startup, which currently operates as an MGA, will seek licenses in all 50 states (rather than purchase a shell company) and will ‘continue to work closely’ with existing partners Munich Re and Markel.
We’ll discuss this move in the realm of some of the recent updates in the small business insurance space in next week’s newsletter.